The day started like any other for the staff and clients who utilize a building in Farmington, Maine, recently opened by a local organization to assist people with developmental and other special needs. Because the building only recently went into use, it was not yet fully occupied. Unfortunately, an experienced gas explosion attorney and other professionals sadly report that this type of disastrous event in Farmington is alarming commonplace across the United States.
At about 8:00 a.m. on Monday, September 16, people on the premises smelled gas. The building was quickly evacuated. Firefighters were dispatched promptly to the scene when the smell of gas was detected.
Immediately after the evacuation, a massive explosion occurred, completely leveling the structure. The violent blast from the gas explosion was felt for miles around. Homes in the neighborhood around the devastated building suffered significant damage. The explosion narrowly missed a school bus had just picked up children at the facility moments before the gas explosion.
Ultimately, eight people were injured as a result of the powerful gas explosion. Four of the injured people are in intensive care. As of this time, all of the injured are expected to recover over time. Unfortunately, one firefighter was killed as a result of the blast.
Local Sheriff: Devastating Maine Gas Explosion Reminiscent of Iraq
Scott Nichols, the local County Sheriff, served the country in Iraq. In assessing the catastrophic devastation associated with the Maine gas explosion, the Sheriff stated: “I spent a year in Iraq. It's the closest I can explain it. It was just total devastation.”
Cellphone footage was taken at the scene moments after the explosion and reveals the massive damage associated with the horrendous blast. The building itself was completely leveled. The explosion was so powerful that much of the building was pulverized. The debris fell like snow back to the ground and after being blasted high into the air.
Those individuals who evacuated the building directly before the gas explosion tucked for shelter wherever they could. One person spoke of dashing behind a nearby shed “because things were just flying everywhere.”
Investigation of Maine Gas Explosion Underway
Directly after the scene was secured and injured people were taken to the hospital, investigation into the cause of the devastating explosion commenced. In addition to local and state investigators, the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives has been dispatched to Farmington. Neither criminal foul play nor terrorism are expected at this time. Nonetheless, these possibilities need to be formally eliminated before a declaration that the blast was an accident can be made.
Propane Gas in Wide Use in the United States
Propane gas is in wide use in the United States, including at residential and commercial properties (like the Farmington, Maine, building that was destroyed in a massive explosion). The breakdown of propane gas use can be helpful in understanding the potential risk presented by this fuel source:
- Residential – 50 million homes
- Commercial – 900,000 buildings
- Industrial – 168,000 facilities
- Agricultural – 320,000 farms and ranches
Consult a Gas Explosion Lawyer
Beyond horrific accidents associated with the residential, commercial, industrial, and agricultural use of propane across the United States, gas explosions of different types cause serious injury and kill a considerable number of people annually. These injuries and deaths occur because of deadly situations that include gas pipeline explosions and industrial accidents. These explosions oftentimes are the result of negligence by one or more parties.
If you or a loved one is the victim of this type of calamity, a gas explosion lawyer at our firm is available to discuss your situation and to provide you with an evaluation of your case. You can reach out to our firm any time of the day or night by calling (800) 349-0000.
As a nationwide law practice, we’ve offices located from coast-to-coast across the country. In addition, we can schedule a meeting at your home or even the hospital, depending on your needs and situation. We can also arrange a virtual consultation with you online at a time that is convenient for you. There is no charge for an initial consultation.
Our firm makes an attorney fee guarantee. There is no fee unless we win for you.